The beginning of a New Year has a lot of promise. We don’t know what will happen: the joys and sorrows, the opportunities before us and plans that will get scrapped, the changes that God will ask of us, the opportunities for ministry that will cross our paths, and the list continues. God does not have it all mapped out, but the promise of Christmas is that he will walk through it all with us. His Birth is the promise that by taking on Flesh, God will always be with humanity.
Mary teaches us today how to live this year in a way to grow in faith. The Gospel writer tells us that “And Mary kept all these reflecting on them in her heart.” Mary kept praying over all the events in the life of Jesus and opened her heart to God to give her the insight she needed to make sense out of it all. What a great example to follow. No matter what is to happen this year we need to bring it to Jesus. I am sure she didn’t always understand what he was doing or why, but she opened her heart to him. So must we. By opening our hearts to Jesus.
he will walk with us and give us the insight to make any decisions,
he will be our rock when we feel that life is out of control,
he will be the source of our forgiveness and the wellspring of grace.
Mary teaches us that when God asks anything of us ad we accept it, He will give us the grace we need. God will give us the strength to endure the Crosses we will be asked to carry and the fullness of joy to celebrate the Resurrection that also occur.
When Joseph and Mary fulfilled the precepts of the Law on this eighth day after the birth, they teach us the importance of living out the precepts of our faith. We are called to pray every day, to celebrate the Sacraments, to study the Sacred Scripture, to live out the spiritual and corporal works of mercy, to not be afraid to be faithful Catholics. I would encourage you to take one thing and devote the year to it
Grow in your life of prayer.
Read one spiritual book
Read through the the Bible this year
Learn about one saint and try to imitate him or her
Get involved in one ministry in the parish
Commit yourself to one act of charity every day
May this New Year be a year of grace for each of you. May the prayers of the Mother of God help you to be faithful to the Christian life. Let 2020 be a time when you encounter Jesus so deeply that you, like Mary, bear him into the world.